Author Topic: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?  (Read 122270 times)

Check2400

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 105
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #250 on: May 20, 2015, 03:03:09 PM »
ReadySetMillionaire-
If you're one year out of Law School (and only being licensed since Oct/Nov) then my humble opinion is this. 

You're in an established law firm, with many senior partners, and many mentorship opportunities.   As you may have found out upon actually practicing law,  your knowledge base from law school was likely nil (it was for me!).  While I am burdened by the same debt many other lawyers come out of school with, I have always known, or hoped at least, that the true earning potential comes 5+ years into your practice, not 5+ months.  That earning potential comes only with experience. 

More importantly, if you are living where you want to live, then make sure that you aren't looking elsewhere chasing an uncertain earlier return on the almighty dollar.  That may not assuage your concerns about viability and employment, so I'll throw an additional two cents in.  Get involved in and go to every young lawyer and Bar event in your area.  Sure, it cuts into work time, is filled with glad handing and small talk, and unfortunately is usually populated with lawyers, but it will make you known.  Not only does this expand your referral network to make your own book of business instead of inheriting it (how mustachian!) but it also creates familiarity for when you want a new job or another lawyer unexpectedly wants to hire you for one. 

Much like saving and investing, your career is a snowball, and you are in the slow buildup and return on it.  Invest in yourself and your network, and you'll be much better off for it.

-Check2400

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 626
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #251 on: May 21, 2015, 08:08:09 AM »
ReadySetMillionaire-
If you're one year out of Law School (and only being licensed since Oct/Nov) then my humble opinion is this. 

You're in an established law firm, with many senior partners, and many mentorship opportunities.   As you may have found out upon actually practicing law,  your knowledge base from law school was likely nil (it was for me!).  While I am burdened by the same debt many other lawyers come out of school with, I have always known, or hoped at least, that the true earning potential comes 5+ years into your practice, not 5+ months.  That earning potential comes only with experience. 

More importantly, if you are living where you want to live, then make sure that you aren't looking elsewhere chasing an uncertain earlier return on the almighty dollar.  That may not assuage your concerns about viability and employment, so I'll throw an additional two cents in.  Get involved in and go to every young lawyer and Bar event in your area.  Sure, it cuts into work time, is filled with glad handing and small talk, and unfortunately is usually populated with lawyers, but it will make you known.  Not only does this expand your referral network to make your own book of business instead of inheriting it (how mustachian!) but it also creates familiarity for when you want a new job or another lawyer unexpectedly wants to hire you for one. 

Much like saving and investing, your career is a snowball, and you are in the slow buildup and return on it.  Invest in yourself and your network, and you'll be much better off for it.

-Check2400
Thanks for this.
No more zero days. Promise yourself that you will do one thing every day that takes you one step closer to your goal.

Daleth

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1204
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #252 on: May 21, 2015, 01:13:13 PM »
ReadySetMillionaire-
If you're one year out of Law School (and only being licensed since Oct/Nov) then my humble opinion is this. 

You're in an established law firm, with many senior partners, and many mentorship opportunities.   As you may have found out upon actually practicing law,  your knowledge base from law school was likely nil (it was for me!).  While I am burdened by the same debt many other lawyers come out of school with, I have always known, or hoped at least, that the true earning potential comes 5+ years into your practice, not 5+ months.  That earning potential comes only with experience. 

More importantly, if you are living where you want to live, then make sure that you aren't looking elsewhere chasing an uncertain earlier return on the almighty dollar.  That may not assuage your concerns about viability and employment, so I'll throw an additional two cents in.  Get involved in and go to every young lawyer and Bar event in your area.  Sure, it cuts into work time, is filled with glad handing and small talk, and unfortunately is usually populated with lawyers, but it will make you known.  Not only does this expand your referral network to make your own book of business instead of inheriting it (how mustachian!) but it also creates familiarity for when you want a new job or another lawyer unexpectedly wants to hire you for one. 

Much like saving and investing, your career is a snowball, and you are in the slow buildup and return on it.  Invest in yourself and your network, and you'll be much better off for it.

-Check2400

Seconding that.

Rpesek6904

  • Guest
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #253 on: May 21, 2015, 04:05:19 PM »
Job security comes with creating your own client relationships. If you own the relationships, you have the ultimate job security. In any firm (or your own firm) you can negotiate for a  higher percentage of your receipts from a position of strength.

Just as said above, you make those relationships at Bar events, Chambers of Commerce, Board of Directors for non-profits or whatever. Don't try and impress people. Just make relationships with people you like and who you can benefit and truly add value. In the long run, that's how you get stability.

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 626
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #254 on: May 22, 2015, 09:46:41 AM »
ReadySetMillionaire-
If you're one year out of Law School (and only being licensed since Oct/Nov) then my humble opinion is this. 

You're in an established law firm, with many senior partners, and many mentorship opportunities.   As you may have found out upon actually practicing law,  your knowledge base from law school was likely nil (it was for me!).  While I am burdened by the same debt many other lawyers come out of school with, I have always known, or hoped at least, that the true earning potential comes 5+ years into your practice, not 5+ months.  That earning potential comes only with experience. 

More importantly, if you are living where you want to live, then make sure that you aren't looking elsewhere chasing an uncertain earlier return on the almighty dollar.  That may not assuage your concerns about viability and employment, so I'll throw an additional two cents in.  Get involved in and go to every young lawyer and Bar event in your area.  Sure, it cuts into work time, is filled with glad handing and small talk, and unfortunately is usually populated with lawyers, but it will make you known.  Not only does this expand your referral network to make your own book of business instead of inheriting it (how mustachian!) but it also creates familiarity for when you want a new job or another lawyer unexpectedly wants to hire you for one. 

Much like saving and investing, your career is a snowball, and you are in the slow buildup and return on it.  Invest in yourself and your network, and you'll be much better off for it.

-Check2400

I read this again after responding to a PM and just want to add that I'm not sure if I'm happy in Youngstown. The economy is still really, really bad here (think Flint, MI; Gary, IN; etc.) and every lawyer I talk to (at my firm or otherwise) has unequivocally told me that business has been decreasing steadily for almost 35 years. For example, my firm has tried to reposition itself from representing national steel mills and insurance companies to doing local-type of work (probate, PI, etc.), but there just aren't enough people in town to support the legal market here. I also was told that I'd be doing a lot of labor and employment work here, and that honestly isn't even 5% of my workload. Today I'm researching a medical malpractice issue, drafting a land installment contract, and attaching exhibits to a motion for summary judgment for a property dispute. And that's a typical day.

I also should add that I'm extremely fond of both Cleveland and Pittsburgh. My GF went to undergrad and grad school in Pittsburgh and would absolutely love to move there, whereas I'm a Cleveland guy through and through. I would love to raise a family in the beautiful east Cleveland suburbs (several of which were recently ranked as 100 best places to live) and work downtown. That would honestly be a dream.

Lastly, I spoke to my career services officer from law school and she was adamant that my most marketable time would be 2-4 years outside of practice. She also advised that even if I didn't eventually lateral, I still should start getting things in order in case the opportunity to lateral presents itself.

So yes, my post sounded a lot like it was all about lateraling to improve my income and job stability (because that was most pertintently on my mind at the time). I can assure all you guys that it's more than that. I want more employment-focused work in a more urban market and have already mentally decided that I'm going to reach for achieving that path. Increased income is just a side benefit, although a very good one.
No more zero days. Promise yourself that you will do one thing every day that takes you one step closer to your goal.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #255 on: June 03, 2015, 07:48:25 AM »
Hi there, lawyer friends.

I'd like your advice on my situation.  I just talked to my department chair.  It's clear that I will not be moved even from part-time SA to full-time SA any time soon.  He said I do great work and everyone who works with me says wonderful things about me.  He's impressed with my business development (lots of speaking and writing coming up).  "When we have people that are worthy of moving from SA to associate, then we're open to that, but I can't give you a time frame."

One factor that I'm wrestling with is that when my work ramped up, my ability to be frugal fell off and my spending is higher now than last year.

Do I keep doing an associate's job for PT/ SA pay so I can make the case for a promotion next year?

Or

Do I drop back to part time, knowing that I will then not be able to argue that I've done an associate's work and should therefore be an associate?


What would you do?

 
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

ZiziPB

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2664
  • Location: CT for now...
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #256 on: June 03, 2015, 08:22:54 AM »
Hi there, lawyer friends.

I'd like your advice on my situation.  I just talked to my department chair.  It's clear that I will not be moved even from part-time SA to full-time SA any time soon.  He said I do great work and everyone who works with me says wonderful things about me.  He's impressed with my business development (lots of speaking and writing coming up).  "When we have people that are worthy of moving from SA to associate, then we're open to that, but I can't give you a time frame."

One factor that I'm wrestling with is that when my work ramped up, my ability to be frugal fell off and my spending is higher now than last year.

Do I keep doing an associate's job for PT/ SA pay so I can make the case for a promotion next year?

Or

Do I drop back to part time, knowing that I will then not be able to argue that I've done an associate's work and should therefore be an associate?


What would you do?

 


Look for a different job.  This place is taking advantage of you and they will continue to do so.  Drop back to part time and spend any extra time and energy you have applying for any possible jobs you can find.



Lyssa

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 477
  • Location: Germany
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #257 on: June 03, 2015, 10:24:39 AM »
Hi there, lawyer friends.

I'd like your advice on my situation.  I just talked to my department chair.  It's clear that I will not be moved even from part-time SA to full-time SA any time soon.  He said I do great work and everyone who works with me says wonderful things about me.  He's impressed with my business development (lots of speaking and writing coming up).  "When we have people that are worthy of moving from SA to associate, then we're open to that, but I can't give you a time frame."

One factor that I'm wrestling with is that when my work ramped up, my ability to be frugal fell off and my spending is higher now than last year.

Do I keep doing an associate's job for PT/ SA pay so I can make the case for a promotion next year?

Or

Do I drop back to part time, knowing that I will then not be able to argue that I've done an associate's work and should therefore be an associate?


What would you do?

 


Look for a different job.  This place is taking advantage of you and they will continue to do so.  Drop back to part time and spend any extra time and energy you have applying for any possible jobs you can find.

+1

I've seen this up close not in the practise of law but when a friend of mine was asked to do a mid level managers job for an assistants salary along with a comparably unspecified perspective the company figured 'why promote him when he gets shit done for half the salary as welll?'. It was very frustrating and he lost a lot of time overperforming on the job that would have better been invested aquiring new qualifications and looking for new opportunities.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2015, 10:51:58 AM by Lyssa »

Axecleaver

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3217
  • Location: New York
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #258 on: June 03, 2015, 10:41:42 AM »
Quote
Do I keep doing an associate's job for PT/ SA pay so I can make the case for a promotion next year?

Or

Do I drop back to part time, knowing that I will then not be able to argue that I've done an associate's work and should therefore be an associate?
Quote
Look for a different job.  This place is taking advantage of you and they will continue to do so.  Drop back to part time and spend any extra time and energy you have applying for any possible jobs you can find.

I suggest you consider a third path - Do both! Continue to put 110% effort into your role and do a great job. At the same time, look for something else. This puts you in a position of strength when you do get a better offer.

You should always be looking for a better job.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #259 on: June 03, 2015, 12:39:09 PM »
Just to clarify, I am still job hunting and networking toward new opportunities.  I could likely land an associate position if I were willing to leave my city.  But I have a really good life here with a deep bench of true friends, a wonderful man, my kids, and my parents.  It's not worth leaving.  So, that limits my prospects -- especially for jobs that pay what I make now (low 6-figures), even as PT/ SA.

Until something new arises, do I downshift or overperform?

I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

ZiziPB

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2664
  • Location: CT for now...
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #260 on: June 03, 2015, 02:08:28 PM »
Just to clarify, I am still job hunting and networking toward new opportunities.  I could likely land an associate position if I were willing to leave my city.  But I have a really good life here with a deep bench of true friends, a wonderful man, my kids, and my parents.  It's not worth leaving.  So, that limits my prospects -- especially for jobs that pay what I make now (low 6-figures), even as PT/ SA.

Until something new arises, do I downshift or overperform?

I would probably downshift.  No reason to be putting in crazy hours if you are getting paid a part time salary unless you have a realistic expectation of being made an associate.  I think the firm made it very clear to you that they have no intention of promoting you.



LeRainDrop

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1830
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #261 on: June 03, 2015, 10:32:11 PM »
Do I keep doing an associate's job for PT/ SA pay so I can make the case for a promotion next year?

Or

Do I drop back to part time, knowing that I will then not be able to argue that I've done an associate's work and should therefore be an associate?


What would you do?

Look for a different job.  This place is taking advantage of you and they will continue to do so.  Drop back to part time and spend any extra time and energy you have applying for any possible jobs you can find.

+1

+2  Always dangling the carrot a little out of reach, while getting the milk for "free."  They are taking advantage of you.  You need to move on.

Suit

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 208
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #262 on: June 04, 2015, 06:33:19 AM »
Do I keep doing an associate's job for PT/ SA pay so I can make the case for a promotion next year?

Or

Do I drop back to part time, knowing that I will then not be able to argue that I've done an associate's work and should therefore be an associate?


What would you do?

Look for a different job.  This place is taking advantage of you and they will continue to do so.  Drop back to part time and spend any extra time and energy you have applying for any possible jobs you can find.

+1

+2  Always dangling the carrot a little out of reach, while getting the milk for "free."  They are taking advantage of you.  You need to move on.

Can you scale back to part time and start your own firm and take your clients with you?

Rpesek6904

  • Guest
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #263 on: June 04, 2015, 06:58:03 AM »
Build client relationships and your own book of business. With the clients you serve now, identify who would potentially work with  you if you left, the amount of hours you billed them, and the hourly rate. Get a decent idea of how much of a practice you actually have and what your economic output is (Btw, if the answer is $0 then you have just identified why your partners don't take you seriously). Start spending all your time on the clients who might leave with you. Make yourself indispensable TO THE CLIENT. Also, start building new relationships with clients that might hire you independent of the firm. Those new relationships should be solid for you no matter where you work.

If you can understand the economic value and create new relationships you can move to a different firm. Maybe it isn't "biglaw." You could enter a smaller firm as a partner (because you are bringing your own business). You could sell it as a "boutique" firm with lower hourly rates and more personal service. Certain clients appreciate this angle -for example, shrewd, wealthy small/medium size business owners who know biglaw is a racket. If you enter a firm with family, criminal law and personal injury (or whatever) they will love having a "business attorney." You will get all of their referrals for business issues. Sometimes, those aren't that small. I once referred a "business case" that ended up paying over $150,000 in attorney fees to another attorney in my firm because he is the only "business" attorney in the firm. It's not every day, but stuff like that does happen.

The key is to think about what you make now (low six figures) and what percentage of your business you would need to create/retain to earn that same amount. The good news is that your current firm is probably paying a small percentage of the money you earn for the firm (20%??). If you take less business but keep a higher percentage (I keep 75%+) then you work less and earn the same or more.

I know my advice is different and a little outside the box. I'm not offended if you ignore it :) Just keep the seed in the back of your mind. This is the business of law. Your partners know this and that is why they are happy to have you keep working for peanuts. The less they pay you, the more they make. The more "low-level" you are perceived by clients, the less of a threat you are to take their clients.

More traditional advice: Your firm is taking advantage of you.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2015, 07:02:12 AM by Rpesek6904 »

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #264 on: June 04, 2015, 07:27:33 AM »
I love this advice  ^^^^, thank you.

I'm going to downshift and put my energies elsewhere -- rebuilding my frugality muscle, writing some fiction, and building business relationships across my city.  Last night, I crunched some numbers and realized that if I can take a 2-week vacation and bill 25 hours a week and still hit the performance standard for a PT/ SA.  Any business development I do will be optional and will either build my book of business or will support the one partner here who has supported me.  If I hit my billable target by Wednesday, COB, I will not be in the office on Thursday or Friday.   And, one of my ongoing projects is a steady flow of easy work -- bread and butter type work  that I can dial up or down as needed to crank out hours.

It's possible that PT/ SA might be a pretty sweet gig.  In 2016, I'll make around $112k billing 30 hours a week.  That's pretty damn good.  By 2017, who knows where I'll be.....
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

Rpesek6904

  • Guest
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #265 on: June 05, 2015, 06:58:54 AM »
Great! I think downshifting is a good plan. Also, flexing the frugality muscles and building your stash is the way to position yourself to make a bold move if leaving/taking your clients somewhere else becomes necessary. As JLCollins says, you have "FU" money. The partners will eventually come and say, "You know, you really have fallen of the cliff TS, whats going on?" Inside you know, "I got wise to your BS, I have FU money and I've solidified my relationships -bring it." So, put all that in action and your partners have no leverage. Good luck.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2015, 07:01:19 AM by Rpesek6904 »

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #266 on: June 05, 2015, 07:10:31 AM »
Great! I think downshifting is a good plan. Also, flexing the frugality muscles and building your stash is the way to position yourself to make a bold move if leaving/taking your clients somewhere else becomes necessary. As JLCollins says, you have "FU" money. The partners will eventually come and say, "You know, you really have fallen of the cliff TS, whats going on?" Inside you know, "I got wise to your BS, I have FU money and I've solidified my relationships -bring it." So, put all that in action and your partners have no leverage. Good luck.

Exactly!  Meanwhile, here are two other meaningful numbers:

PT/ SA pay per billable hour:  $72.68  with none of the obligations/ pressure to write/ speak/ build business; 30 - 40 hour work week
3rd year assoc pay per billable hour:  $79.39 with all of the pressure to meet goals for writing/ speaking/ business dev; 70 - 80 hour work week or more

This might be a classic case of "be careful what you wish for."
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

OneCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 391
  • Age: 30
  • Location: SoFla
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #267 on: June 10, 2015, 05:04:40 PM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas? 
I refinanced my student loans with Sofi from 6.8% to 3.805%.  Use my referral URL for a $100 welcome bonus if you refinance with Sofi:  https://www.sofi.com/refer/234/11233

YTProphet

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 192
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #268 on: June 11, 2015, 06:35:13 AM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I would try a mid-level law firm that represents a lot of banks in the area. They'd obviously have a very strong banking group as well as debtor-creditor/workout group. Your experience would definitely be helpful and I would really play up all the experience you have working on corporate bankruptcy/workouts.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #269 on: June 11, 2015, 06:47:02 AM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I would try a mid-level law firm that represents a lot of banks in the area. They'd obviously have a very strong banking group as well as debtor-creditor/workout group. Your experience would definitely be helpful and I would really play up all the experience you have working on corporate bankruptcy/workouts.

+1   Also, create a robust LinkedIn profile.  Find professional groups on LinkedIn in areas that interest you.  Read the "conversations" and post relevant comments. 

Do lots of in-person networking too.  If you're not a member of your local bar association and/ or chamber of commerce, then join them.  Go to every relevant event.  When you meet people with whom you want to build a relationship, follow up by phone or email and ask to meet for coffee or lunch.   Read the book, "The Like Switch" for great, practical ideas on how to build relationships. Your relationships will lead to your next job, almost guaranteed.

RE:  foreclosure/ bankruptcy... can you translate your experience with this into a similar but different area?  Maybe banking regulation compliance?  That's a very hot area right now with high demand and low supply of qualified people.
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

YTProphet

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 192
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #270 on: June 11, 2015, 06:57:01 AM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I would try a mid-level law firm that represents a lot of banks in the area. They'd obviously have a very strong banking group as well as debtor-creditor/workout group. Your experience would definitely be helpful and I would really play up all the experience you have working on corporate bankruptcy/workouts.

Also, and I don't mean to be a debbie downer here, keep in mind that you have a limited window of time to make the move to a larger firm. Once you get past 3-4 years out, most associates at mid-level or BigLaw firms are doing higher level work and have progressed significantly from a knowledge/skill perspective. Also, hiring by those firms tends to decrease severely after the 5th or 6th year mark. So, you need to make switching jobs a priority asap. Apply for every semi-relevant job with a good firm and be aggressive about it. Each passing year will make it more difficult to make the transition.

OneCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 391
  • Age: 30
  • Location: SoFla
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #271 on: June 11, 2015, 06:32:40 PM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I would try a mid-level law firm that represents a lot of banks in the area. They'd obviously have a very strong banking group as well as debtor-creditor/workout group. Your experience would definitely be helpful and I would really play up all the experience you have working on corporate bankruptcy/workouts.

Also, and I don't mean to be a debbie downer here, keep in mind that you have a limited window of time to make the move to a larger firm. Once you get past 3-4 years out, most associates at mid-level or BigLaw firms are doing higher level work and have progressed significantly from a knowledge/skill perspective. Also, hiring by those firms tends to decrease severely after the 5th or 6th year mark. So, you need to make switching jobs a priority asap. Apply for every semi-relevant job with a good firm and be aggressive about it. Each passing year will make it more difficult to make the transition.

Thanks YT and TS, some good advice.  I should definitely get out to more bar events, that's something I've never been very proactive about.  I do want to make the move to a larger firm, I'll keep looking.
I refinanced my student loans with Sofi from 6.8% to 3.805%.  Use my referral URL for a $100 welcome bonus if you refinance with Sofi:  https://www.sofi.com/refer/234/11233

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 626
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #272 on: June 12, 2015, 10:38:07 AM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I'm less than a year out and have kind of a similar dilemma (scroll back in the thread). In short, I like my firm as well, but it seems to be struggling so I've gotten my ducks in a row to apply to bigger firms in Cleveland.

I just turned in my first application to a big firm yesterday. I tailored my resume and cover letter to the exact position.

I will be stoked just to get an interview. I will keep you (and everyone else) posted as to how it goes.
No more zero days. Promise yourself that you will do one thing every day that takes you one step closer to your goal.

YTProphet

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 192
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #273 on: June 12, 2015, 10:40:59 AM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I'm less than a year out and have kind of a similar dilemma (scroll back in the thread). In short, I like my firm as well, but it seems to be struggling so I've gotten my ducks in a row to apply to bigger firms in Cleveland.

I just turned in my first application to a big firm yesterday. I tailored my resume and cover letter to the exact position.

I will be stoked just to get an interview. I will keep you (and everyone else) posted as to how it goes.

Great to hear, RSM. I think that's a wise move for your future on multiple fronts. I'm excited to hear how things go. And it's always much easier applying to jobs from a position of strength (already having a job) than from a position of weakness (having no job).

gReed Smith

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 171
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #274 on: June 12, 2015, 03:29:51 PM »
Just joined - Midlaw firm in a mid-sized city.  Corporate/transactional work, largely real estate.  Salary is $120k, but get bonuses up to $30k depending on the year.  I like the work, but not necessarily the people I work with.  However, I'm finding it hard to find a firm that can integrate my practice so that I can transport my clients.

OneCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 391
  • Age: 30
  • Location: SoFla
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #275 on: June 12, 2015, 05:25:43 PM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I'm less than a year out and have kind of a similar dilemma (scroll back in the thread). In short, I like my firm as well, but it seems to be struggling so I've gotten my ducks in a row to apply to bigger firms in Cleveland.

I just turned in my first application to a big firm yesterday. I tailored my resume and cover letter to the exact position.

I will be stoked just to get an interview. I will keep you (and everyone else) posted as to how it goes.

Nice, hopefully we both get into bigger firms!
I refinanced my student loans with Sofi from 6.8% to 3.805%.  Use my referral URL for a $100 welcome bonus if you refinance with Sofi:  https://www.sofi.com/refer/234/11233

LouLou

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 227
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #276 on: June 13, 2015, 10:26:18 PM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I'm less than a year out and have kind of a similar dilemma (scroll back in the thread). In short, I like my firm as well, but it seems to be struggling so I've gotten my ducks in a row to apply to bigger firms in Cleveland.

I just turned in my first application to a big firm yesterday. I tailored my resume and cover letter to the exact position.

I will be stoked just to get an interview. I will keep you (and everyone else) posted as to how it goes.

Nice, hopefully we both get into bigger firms!

Good luck to both of you! I lateraled after one year to a bigger firm and I'm much happier.  Meanwhile, the rumors out of my old firm are not good. I left at the right time.

For OneCoolCat:

Personally, I've never even thought about Careerbuilder for legal work.  I don't think larger law firms post their lawyer positions at websites like that.  My recommendations:
1. Knowing people (i.e. get involved in your legal community and build relationships with people you like, as discussed above).
2.  Bar association websites (state, city, practice areas, diversity/affinity, etc) have the best job listings
3. Law firm websites

These often work together.  I met someone at an event who worked at a firm I was interested in.  When the firm had a job posting on the state bar website, I contacted that person to ask questions before applying.  That person then sent my resume onto the recruiting committee.  Then I got the interview and took it from there.

Also, I don't think lateraling after one year is as hard as it used to be.  Law firms lowered their hiring post-recession.  Now that work is picking back up, they have gaps to fill.  My new firm, for example, has been on an associate hiring binge.

Finally, I think you should apply for litigation associate positions at bigger firms.  You've probably drafted court documents and/or gone to court, right? That is really all that matters when you're applying for junior associate jobs.

For ReadySetMillionaire:

Glad to see you are applying for bigger firms!  You need to apply to a lot of jobs based on your description of your firm.  Your firm may have started in 18whatever, but Dewey & Leboeuf started a long time ago too.  Just saying.

OneCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 391
  • Age: 30
  • Location: SoFla
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #277 on: June 14, 2015, 10:51:33 AM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I'm less than a year out and have kind of a similar dilemma (scroll back in the thread). In short, I like my firm as well, but it seems to be struggling so I've gotten my ducks in a row to apply to bigger firms in Cleveland.

I just turned in my first application to a big firm yesterday. I tailored my resume and cover letter to the exact position.

I will be stoked just to get an interview. I will keep you (and everyone else) posted as to how it goes.

Nice, hopefully we both get into bigger firms!

Good luck to both of you! I lateraled after one year to a bigger firm and I'm much happier.  Meanwhile, the rumors out of my old firm are not good. I left at the right time.

For OneCoolCat:

Personally, I've never even thought about Careerbuilder for legal work.  I don't think larger law firms post their lawyer positions at websites like that.  My recommendations:
1. Knowing people (i.e. get involved in your legal community and build relationships with people you like, as discussed above).
2.  Bar association websites (state, city, practice areas, diversity/affinity, etc) have the best job listings
3. Law firm websites

These often work together.  I met someone at an event who worked at a firm I was interested in.  When the firm had a job posting on the state bar website, I contacted that person to ask questions before applying.  That person then sent my resume onto the recruiting committee.  Then I got the interview and took it from there.

Also, I don't think lateraling after one year is as hard as it used to be.  Law firms lowered their hiring post-recession.  Now that work is picking back up, they have gaps to fill.  My new firm, for example, has been on an associate hiring binge.

Finally, I think you should apply for litigation associate positions at bigger firms.  You've probably drafted court documents and/or gone to court, right? That is really all that matters when you're applying for junior associate jobs.

For ReadySetMillionaire:

Glad to see you are applying for bigger firms!  You need to apply to a lot of jobs based on your description of your firm.  Your firm may have started in 18whatever, but Dewey & Leboeuf started a long time ago too.  Just saying.

Great advice here, thanks!  I have been going to the websites of the bigger firms and have seen they have quite a few openings listed and I have been applying to many.

I definitely need to attend some bar association events, its just a struggle to get me to get out there and do it.  I'm going to try it out soon and hopefully meet some people.

I get a lot of courtroom experience, I'm in bankruptcy or state circuit court everyday.
I refinanced my student loans with Sofi from 6.8% to 3.805%.  Use my referral URL for a $100 welcome bonus if you refinance with Sofi:  https://www.sofi.com/refer/234/11233

Cycling Stache

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 356
  • Age: 41
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #278 on: June 14, 2015, 12:42:19 PM »
This is one I can answer and, since it actually reflects my Mustachian story, my first post.

Harvard grad, big firm for a number of years, and now government for about 7 years.  I am a happy Mustachios lawyer, mainly because I stopped living like a lawyer, and know that as a result, I only have a few more years to work.

The back story.  At the firm, I was unhappy most of the time working long hours (and, really, unhappy working much at all).  The pay was great, but what I saw was that most people were miserable, and I often found myself spending money as a reward for suffering through the day.  In a sense, it felt like all I had to show for a crappy 12-14 hours was money, so I might as well spend it. 

Then I went to the government and took a 2/3 pay cut.  But the hours were much better, and despite still never really being a worker bee, I mostly enjoyed the job and found myself working a regular schedule and getting to spend a lot of time with my family and working out.  We cut way back on our expenses, but didn't pay too much attention to finances because we made more than we spent and didn't have much debt, so I felt like a financial success.

About a year ago, MMM turned my world upside down, and completely for the better!  First, I realized that it was okay not to work all my life.  It sounds weird that that should be surprising, but law feels very much like a career profession.  Of course, I spoke to lawyers who fantasized about walking away from it all as a break from the stress and hours, but not as an actual plan.  After reading MMM, I could finally admit that although I have a very good law job, I don't really enjoy working to work.  The idea of building a resume, making sure there were no gaps, etc., was someone else's ideal.  I need enough money to be financially independent, and that's it.

Second, MMM forced me to focus on my finances.  I did my first budget and was proud that I expected to be net positive $798 for the year!  I laugh now because after a little less than a year of cuts, my net-positive number is over $100,000.  The secret?  I realized that I bought a lot of things because I could, and really, to reward myself for getting through work.  Once I realized that I didn't have to work forever, each dollar I saved got me closer to freedom.  And what was interesting was that once the stress of having to work all my life went away, I started enjoying work more and enjoying the things I already had.  I don't need to regularly eat out for lunch or dinner, I don't need fancy clothes, I don't need a fancy car, and I don't need to have cool electronics and other stuff.  I spend my time riding my bike or running, ride to work most days with my wife and kids, and generally work regular hours unless I'm in trial.  People joke that I no longer look or act like a lawyer, and that is totally okay for me.     

Third, I realized that my happiness is up to me.  Most lawyers I've met are stressed on a fairly regular basis.  The hours and workload are often intense, but there's a sense that it's not something that can ever be given up.  For me, I've decided that yes it can.  Nobody will care whether I was a lawyer for 20 years (my current retirement goal) or 40 years, and I'd much rather be the 20-year lawyer.

So I'm thankful for MMM and the Mustachian ideals.  Lawyers get paid more than most for the skill and often stress our jobs require.  Taking advantage of that pay to get to FI more quickly is one of the great possible benefits.  So yes, I'm a Mustachian lawyer for now, and happily so.  But that's because I'm only going to do it as long as I have to, then off to Jimmy Johns to get paid to ride my bike!

PtboEliz

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 146
  • Age: 41
  • Location: East of Toronto
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #279 on: June 14, 2015, 02:15:33 PM »
^^Loved reading your story Cycling Stache!

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 626
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #280 on: June 15, 2015, 02:50:02 PM »
For ReadySetMillionaire:

Glad to see you are applying for bigger firms!  You need to apply to a lot of jobs based on your description of your firm.  Your firm may have started in 18whatever, but Dewey & Leboeuf started a long time ago too.  Just saying.
Thanks for the advice. I just went on Martindale today and jotted down all the firms with 50+ lawyers in Cleveland. I'm going to begin checking job postings weekly and making sure I send in strong and targeted applications rather than mass-mailing to every firm and hoping to land somewhere.
No more zero days. Promise yourself that you will do one thing every day that takes you one step closer to your goal.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #281 on: June 15, 2015, 03:36:37 PM »
For ReadySetMillionaire:

Glad to see you are applying for bigger firms!  You need to apply to a lot of jobs based on your description of your firm.  Your firm may have started in 18whatever, but Dewey & Leboeuf started a long time ago too.  Just saying.
Thanks for the advice. I just went on Martindale today and jotted down all the firms with 50+ lawyers in Cleveland. I'm going to begin checking job postings weekly and making sure I send in strong and targeted applications rather than mass-mailing to every firm and hoping to land somewhere.

Suggestion.... identify specific lawyers at those firms whose practice is similar to yours.  Create a "hit list" of people you want to meet and target your networking toward them.   If you meet one person on your list, in the course of conversation you can say "Do you know so-and-so (also on the list) at Such-and-such firm?"   Depending on how the conversation goes, you can let them know you're looking for opportunities. 
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 626
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #282 on: June 15, 2015, 03:41:24 PM »
For ReadySetMillionaire:

Glad to see you are applying for bigger firms!  You need to apply to a lot of jobs based on your description of your firm.  Your firm may have started in 18whatever, but Dewey & Leboeuf started a long time ago too.  Just saying.
Thanks for the advice. I just went on Martindale today and jotted down all the firms with 50+ lawyers in Cleveland. I'm going to begin checking job postings weekly and making sure I send in strong and targeted applications rather than mass-mailing to every firm and hoping to land somewhere.

Suggestion.... identify specific lawyers at those firms whose practice is similar to yours.  Create a "hit list" of people you want to meet and target your networking toward them.   If you meet one person on your list, in the course of conversation you can say "Do you know so-and-so (also on the list) at Such-and-such firm?"   Depending on how the conversation goes, you can let them know you're looking for opportunities.

I kind of did this today when I started looking at Ohio State alums (I went to undergrad and law school there). My plan was to:

(A) Research attorneys speaking at Cleveland CLE's and hope to meet up with them at said events;
(B) Attend Cleveland bar events;
(C) Look broadly at Ohio State alums at these firms and perhaps email them;
(D) Keep in touch with friends from law school and hope they can put a good word in if and when I want to apply to their firm.

Am I missing anything?
No more zero days. Promise yourself that you will do one thing every day that takes you one step closer to your goal.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #283 on: June 15, 2015, 07:30:10 PM »
I think that's a winning formula.   Wash, rinse, repeat.  And be patient.
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

YTProphet

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 192
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #284 on: June 15, 2015, 07:35:29 PM »
ReadySetMillionaire - what areas do you focus on? I moved in-house and have a good relationship with some attorneys at a certain large "fast food" Cleveland firm (if you catch my drift). I may be able to make a connection for you.

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 626
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #285 on: June 15, 2015, 08:26:51 PM »
ReadySetMillionaire - what areas do you focus on? I moved in-house and have a good relationship with some attorneys at a certain large "fast food" Cleveland firm (if you catch my drift). I may be able to make a connection for you.

Wow. Thanks!

I've been doing general civil litigation but am trying to carve out a labor/employment niche. Assignments have been limited in that practice area so I've been taking what I can get.

Honestly though, my experience is limited enough that I'd be open to most litigation practice areas.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2015, 08:30:03 PM by ReadySetMillionaire »
No more zero days. Promise yourself that you will do one thing every day that takes you one step closer to your goal.

bertrandhustle

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 25
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #286 on: June 16, 2015, 04:52:19 PM »
Mustachians who have paid for law school before, can you please help me answer this question?

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/how-should-i-finance-law-school/

OneCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 391
  • Age: 30
  • Location: SoFla
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #287 on: June 17, 2015, 09:51:08 PM »
Good news!

I'm the first year associate who works in a small foreclosure/bankruptcy firm that represents lenders (lower T1 law school/graduated with honors/secondary journal).  I took the advice here and applied to some mid and larger firms for openings and I got an email requesting a preliminary interview with a "biglaw" firm.  I suspect this is where they call me and briefly ask questions in order to see if they actually want to interview me in person.

Anyone want to give me an idea of what to expect?  It was for a position doing "public companies & securities" work and they were asking for laterals with 2-3 years of relevant experience.  I mentioned it was a reach didn't I?

Anyways... wish me luck!

---------

EDIT:  I think they actually want the preliminary interview to be in person, they asked to "meet" with me.  I need to figure out a way to make it to the interview as I have court appearances on both days they want to meet.

« Last Edit: June 17, 2015, 09:58:50 PM by OneCoolCat »
I refinanced my student loans with Sofi from 6.8% to 3.805%.  Use my referral URL for a $100 welcome bonus if you refinance with Sofi:  https://www.sofi.com/refer/234/11233

dragoncar

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7371
  • Registered member
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #288 on: June 17, 2015, 11:31:04 PM »
Good news!

I'm the first year associate who works in a small foreclosure/bankruptcy firm that represents lenders (lower T1 law school/graduated with honors/secondary journal).  I took the advice here and applied to some mid and larger firms for openings and I got an email requesting a preliminary interview with a "biglaw" firm.  I suspect this is where they call me and briefly ask questions in order to see if they actually want to interview me in person.

Anyone want to give me an idea of what to expect?  It was for a position doing "public companies & securities" work and they were asking for laterals with 2-3 years of relevant experience.  I mentioned it was a reach didn't I?

Anyways... wish me luck!

---------

EDIT:  I think they actually want the preliminary interview to be in person, they asked to "meet" with me.  I need to figure out a way to make it to the interview as I have court appearances on both days they want to meet.

I don't know what a "preliminary interview" means, but would just pretend I didn't hear the "preliminary" part

houstonnative

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 3
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #289 on: June 18, 2015, 05:30:33 AM »
Lawyer with Mustachian tendencies. Went to State U Law on scholarship rather than take out mega-loans to attend more prestigious private law school. There are pluses and minuses to that decision. Never wanted to be BigLaw. I've spent 11 years in SmallLaw (litigation) and hate it most days. As in, I'd like to find a nice tall bridge to swan-dive off of.

Money is pretty good ($140k) and I'm a pretty good saver, but not a real Mustachian by any means. Lifestyle creep is a real thing, and if you don't like your job you will look for ways to spend money to increase happiness (which is a fool's game). Because I work for a small general-business firm, I have a pretty good grasp on the basics of transactional and regulatory work. Unfortunately, I think I would be just as unhappy doing "deals" as I am doing lawsuits. So, looking at moving to government/non-profit/in-house. Income will likely take a big hit by doing so, so I'm trying to bulk up my frugality muscles now. Would be very curious to hear from others who have made a similar transition and how they made it work.

MrsCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 407
  • Age: 2013
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #290 on: June 18, 2015, 11:26:43 AM »
Good luck lawyers! 😉

MrsCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 407
  • Age: 2013
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #291 on: June 18, 2015, 11:30:01 AM »
Young lawyer here, almost one year of experience doing creditor's rights litigation (foreclosure/bankruptcy) in a smaller firm.  I would like to get out of the foreclosure industry before it completely runs dry.  Some firms have started consolidating or even closing shop and I'm concerned about the writing on the wall at my own firm, which I truly like.  How would you go about using my one year of litigation experience in foreclosure and bankruptcy proceedings to land a job in a larger firm?  Should I use a recruiter?  I went to a T1 and graduated in the top 1/3 of my class, I didn't have better offers upon graduation so I took this one.  When I go to Careerbuilder I only see jobs for foreclosure, bankruptcy, and insurance defense and i would prefer to avoid those areas.  The only portal with other options seems to be my schools Symplicity page but that's very limited in the geographical area i'm in.  Anyone have any other ideas?

I'm less than a year out and have kind of a similar dilemma (scroll back in the thread). In short, I like my firm as well, but it seems to be struggling so I've gotten my ducks in a row to apply to bigger firms in Cleveland.

I just turned in my first application to a big firm yesterday. I tailored my resume and cover letter to the exact position.

I will be stoked just to get an interview. I will keep you (and everyone else) posted as to how it goes.

Nice, hopefully we both get into bigger firms!

Good luck to both of you! I lateraled after one year to a bigger firm and I'm much happier.  Meanwhile, the rumors out of my old firm are not good. I left at the right time.

For OneCoolCat:

Personally, I've never even thought about Careerbuilder for legal work.  I don't think larger law firms post their lawyer positions at websites like that.  My recommendations:
1. Knowing people (i.e. get involved in your legal community and build relationships with people you like, as discussed above).
2.  Bar association websites (state, city, practice areas, diversity/affinity, etc) have the best job listings
3. Law firm websites

These often work together.  I met someone at an event who worked at a firm I was interested in.  When the firm had a job posting on the state bar website, I contacted that person to ask questions before applying.  That person then sent my resume onto the recruiting committee.  Then I got the interview and took it from there.

Also, I don't think lateraling after one year is as hard as it used to be.  Law firms lowered their hiring post-recession.  Now that work is picking back up, they have gaps to fill.  My new firm, for example, has been on an associate hiring binge.

Finally, I think you should apply for litigation associate positions at bigger firms.  You've probably drafted court documents and/or gone to court, right? That is really all that matters when you're applying for junior associate jobs.

For ReadySetMillionaire:

Glad to see you are applying for bigger firms!  You need to apply to a lot of jobs based on your description of your firm.  Your firm may have started in 18whatever, but Dewey & Leboeuf started a long time ago too.  Just saying.

Great advice here, thanks!  I have been going to the websites of the bigger firms and have seen they have quite a few openings listed and I have been applying to many.

I definitely need to attend some bar association events, its just a struggle to get me to get out there and do it.  I'm going to try it out soon and hopefully meet some people.

I get a lot of courtroom experience, I'm in bankruptcy or state circuit court everyday.

Yea, u should get outta the house more... Hehe.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #292 on: August 17, 2015, 09:19:46 AM »
Good news!

I'm the first year associate who works in a small foreclosure/bankruptcy firm that represents lenders (lower T1 law school/graduated with honors/secondary journal).  I took the advice here and applied to some mid and larger firms for openings and I got an email requesting a preliminary interview with a "biglaw" firm.  I suspect this is where they call me and briefly ask questions in order to see if they actually want to interview me in person.

Anyone want to give me an idea of what to expect?  It was for a position doing "public companies & securities" work and they were asking for laterals with 2-3 years of relevant experience.  I mentioned it was a reach didn't I?

Anyways... wish me luck!

---------

EDIT:  I think they actually want the preliminary interview to be in person, they asked to "meet" with me.  I need to figure out a way to make it to the interview as I have court appearances on both days they want to meet.

OneCoolCat... update? 
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

DCKatie09

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1211
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #293 on: August 17, 2015, 11:33:19 AM »
Just spent an hour reading through this entire thread and now I'm deeply invested in the career prospects of OneCoolCat, ReadySetMillionaire, and TrulyStashin - good luck to you all!

I'm a 2009 grad from a top 20 school, did a joint masters in public policy thinking I wanted to do federal policy work, but it turns out I love the higher ed world. For the past 5 years I've been back at my alma mater doing public interest legal career services work, which is basically a dream job (even if it doesn't pay anywhere close to private sector $$ - I'm in the upper 60s and feel grateful to be doing comparatively well in the public interest world). About 120K in federal student loans, 5 years to go to PSLF, lucky that DH didn't bring any loans to the table, and to have a generous school LRAP program.

DH and I are about 8-10 years from FI, he's hardcore on the RE side of things, I'd like to keep working (though part-time could definitely be appealing, and isn't a stretch in higher ed). I don't regret law school, but I do warn most people away from it now.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #294 on: August 17, 2015, 03:17:34 PM »
DC Katie09, welcome to the thread.

Not to be too big of a tease... but I'll have an update about two weeks from now.  I'm pretty excited about it.
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

DCKatie09

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1211
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #295 on: August 17, 2015, 07:18:51 PM »
DC Katie09, welcome to the thread.

Not to be too big of a tease... but I'll have an update about two weeks from now.  I'm pretty excited about it.

Can't wait! Excited to have this in my monitored column now :)

dragoncar

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7371
  • Registered member
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #296 on: August 18, 2015, 01:15:09 AM »
DC Katie09, welcome to the thread.

Not to be too big of a tease... but I'll have an update about two weeks from now.  I'm pretty excited about it.

Can't wait! Excited to have this in my monitored column now :)

I'm totally relying on this update to happen

OneCoolCat

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 391
  • Age: 30
  • Location: SoFla
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #297 on: August 18, 2015, 09:11:07 AM »
Good news!

I'm the first year associate who works in a small foreclosure/bankruptcy firm that represents lenders (lower T1 law school/graduated with honors/secondary journal).  I took the advice here and applied to some mid and larger firms for openings and I got an email requesting a preliminary interview with a "biglaw" firm.  I suspect this is where they call me and briefly ask questions in order to see if they actually want to interview me in person.

Anyone want to give me an idea of what to expect?  It was for a position doing "public companies & securities" work and they were asking for laterals with 2-3 years of relevant experience.  I mentioned it was a reach didn't I?

Anyways... wish me luck!

---------

EDIT:  I think they actually want the preliminary interview to be in person, they asked to "meet" with me.  I need to figure out a way to make it to the interview as I have court appearances on both days they want to meet.

OneCoolCat... update?

I had the interview.  It went well but I could have done better to show interest in the position.  I had taken a lot of tax classes in law school, this was not a tax position, and the hiring partner asked me about my understanding of ERISA.  I told him i didn't study into ERISA too much in my classes and mentioned it was probably taught more in a employment law class.   HP seemed surprised and I felt really dumb.  The interviews with the other partners went great, but I could have done better with the first partner.  It seemed like a great firm with interesting partners so I may apply to other listings they put up, it can't hurt.  I was expecting more questions about my current employment but they were more interested in finding out more about me and talking about themselves.  I got dinged 5 weeks later.

It was a great learning experience as it was my first real attorney interview, I got a job out of law school at a firm I clerked with and never went through a formal interview process.  I'm going to get back into applying to other firms this weekend.  I ended up breaking my shoulder and undergoing surgery right after the interview so I haven't been looking/applying since the interview.

Thanks for asking!
I refinanced my student loans with Sofi from 6.8% to 3.805%.  Use my referral URL for a $100 welcome bonus if you refinance with Sofi:  https://www.sofi.com/refer/234/11233

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #298 on: August 18, 2015, 12:42:48 PM »
Good news!

I'm the first year associate who works in a small foreclosure/bankruptcy firm that represents lenders (lower T1 law school/graduated with honors/secondary journal).  I took the advice here and applied to some mid and larger firms for openings and I got an email requesting a preliminary interview with a "biglaw" firm.  I suspect this is where they call me and briefly ask questions in order to see if they actually want to interview me in person.

Anyone want to give me an idea of what to expect?  It was for a position doing "public companies & securities" work and they were asking for laterals with 2-3 years of relevant experience.  I mentioned it was a reach didn't I?

Anyways... wish me luck!

---------

EDIT:  I think they actually want the preliminary interview to be in person, they asked to "meet" with me.  I need to figure out a way to make it to the interview as I have court appearances on both days they want to meet.

OneCoolCat... update?

I had the interview.  It went well but I could have done better to show interest in the position.  I had taken a lot of tax classes in law school, this was not a tax position, and the hiring partner asked me about my understanding of ERISA.  I told him i didn't study into ERISA too much in my classes and mentioned it was probably taught more in a employment law class.   HP seemed surprised and I felt really dumb.  The interviews with the other partners went great, but I could have done better with the first partner.  It seemed like a great firm with interesting partners so I may apply to other listings they put up, it can't hurt.  I was expecting more questions about my current employment but they were more interested in finding out more about me and talking about themselves.  I got dinged 5 weeks later.

It was a great learning experience as it was my first real attorney interview, I got a job out of law school at a firm I clerked with and never went through a formal interview process.  I'm going to get back into applying to other firms this weekend.  I ended up breaking my shoulder and undergoing surgery right after the interview so I haven't been looking/applying since the interview.

Thanks for asking!

Learning experiences are always valuable.  I agree that ERISA is more of an employment-law thing but who knows... maybe when he was in law school, it was in tax law classes.  His surprise might be less an indicator of you being wrong and more an indicator of him being out of touch with law school curriculum.  So, don't beat yourself up about that one.  Frankly, baby lawyers don't really know anything - your biggest value is in your ability to learn the law and learn how to do it -- so, it's a bit of a silly question to ask a brand new lawyer.

I hope your shoulder is better.  Go get that new job!!  You might write directly to the other partners with whom you interviewed, just to touch base and let them know you were impressed with their firm and interested in opportunities with them.  It can't hurt.
I refinanced my student loans with SoFi and dropped my interest rate from over 7% to 3.9%.

Bo-rrific G

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 30
  • Location: Zug, Switzerland
Re: Any Lawyer Mustachians on here?
« Reply #299 on: August 27, 2015, 08:42:53 PM »
I'm a lawyer and have been practicing for 8 years.  I started out in litigation but I am now in-house.  I saw an earlier post from a person that was thinking about going in-house.  I want to make sure to express that no in-house lawyer I know actually has the "work/life balance" that they sought.  My sample group is through the local chapter of an organization (membership of about 1,200 in-house lawyers, I typically mingle with about 20-30 new people during each event as director). I work from 8:30 until about 7-7:30 most days, on Thursdays I have to arrive by 7 and it is nearly impossible to leave any earlier than the other days. 

I also travel 60% of the time. That is not something I signed up for, in fact, I negotiated to only take 4 trips per year when I transitioned to my most recent position, but something "came up" and travel has been required. As an example of the craziness involved, I had to go on an international trip with 5 hours' notice the week before Christmas.  I was also gone for 38 days straight in the first quarter of 2015.

I'm sharing these little bits because there is a misconception that in-house jobs are a mecca of 9-5 jobs.  I am working harder, longer, and more eratic hours now than I did as a litigator. You will not know what your job is going to be like until you have been in the thick of it for a few months.


To respond to the main topic of this forum:

I went to a state school as a part-time student, worker three jobs during school, and took out loans to pay for tuition and help my parents (they were in terrible financial status while I was in school).  I am incredibly lucky to be where I am given where I started, but I do have about $60k in loans (started out with $100k).  Writing down my loan status is sobering...I end up wasting a lot of money when I feel exhausted, stressed, or sleep deprived and I have been all three for a few years. Last comment I will make is that I love being outdoors and I live in a city where that is simply not possible.